'Cut cancer vaccine prices'

Zinhle Mapumulo

Zinhle Mapumulo

Thousands of women will continue to develop and later die from cervical cancer each year in South Africa despite the availability of vaccines.

Two vaccines that prevent cervical cancer, Cervarix and Gardasil, were launched last year.

The biggest problem, however, is that only a few people are able to access them because they are expensive and are only available at private health facilities.

Last week, one of the manufacturers of the vaccines, GlaxoSmith Kline, said it was reducing the price of Cervarix by 36percent. The price decreased from R770 to R450 a single dose.

The Cancer Association of SA welcomed the decrease, but encouraged manufacturers to drop the price even further.

Cervical cancer kills more than 3400 women each year in South Africa.